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Edge Conf London, June 2015

Jul 27, 2015

In which I sweat and moderate a panel, and it is good.

Last month I had the honor of moderating the progressive enhancement panel at Edge Conf in London. Also: sweating and trying to look like I'm really OK despite the failure of the air conditioning at Facebook's glass-lined beautiful fishtank—I failed, to wit:

I don't photograph well on stage, ever

Edge Conf is one of my very fave conferences

I shall give you some brief bullets as to the why:

  • Everyone who is there is, or definitely is encouraged to be, involved. Moderators are expected to try to include as many audience comments in the discussion as possible. The audience is like an extension of the panel itself. As such, the collection of talent in the room is, amazing, and also, ah, intimidating.
  • This isn't just a bunch of folks sitting on stage winging it and bloviating. Preparation is almost extreme, but I mean that in a good way. Questions submitted by the community are vetted, morphed, and arranged into conversation-provoking continuity—almost a narrative of connected questions.
  • Things are dense: there's a fast-paced back-channel (this time it was Slack) and moderators have to keep questions and answers and comments to very particular short time. This latter thing is for the greater good, and, in my opinion, helps to make the event pithy and focused.

I'm late on this. There's already been much super coverage from Jeremy and Andreas and Matthew among many others.

Video coverage is up; here's my session specifically but you can find all of 'em on the Edge Conf site.